Sunday night’s tragedy in Waukesha, Wisconsin, was a “horrific act of violence,” President Joe Biden said Monday as he extended his sympathies to those who lost loved ones after a vehicle drove through the town’s Christmas parade.
“We don’t have all the facts and details yet, but we know this morning that five families of Waukesha are facing fresh grief of a life without a loved one,” the president said at a press conference.
Authorities say at least five people were killed and around 40 people were hospitalized after an SUV sped through the parade route. Among the hospitalized are 18 children taken to a Milwaukee hospital, where six of them are in critical condition.
The deceased range in age from 52 to 81, police said Monday.
“An entire community is struggling to cope,” Biden said Monday, adding: “Last night, the people of Waukesha were gathered to celebrate the start of a season of hope and togetherness and thanksgiving.”
Shortly after Biden spoke, police in Waukesha confirmed they’d taken a suspect into custody. The suspect, 39-year-old Darrell Brooks, allegedly fled the scene of a domestic disturbance minutes before plowing through the parade, police said, and is expected to face five charges of first-degree homicide.
“We are confident he acted alone,” Police Chief Dan Thompson said. “There is no evident that this is a terror incident.”